Hormone Replacement Therapy
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a treatment used to balance progesterone and estrogen in women during menopause. It can help relieve symptoms associated with menopause including hot flashes and sweating, and can also reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Testosterone is used in hormone therapy in men who see a decline in their levels as they age. Testosterone is necessary for:
- Reproductive function
- Sexual development
- Maintaining bone density
- Maintaining healthy levels of red blood cells
- Building muscle bulk
HRT treatments are also used in treating individuals undergoing a sex change.
Hormone replacement therapy is a successful way to treat perimenopause and menopause. Estrogen and progesterone are vital hormones in the female reproductive system. As we age, the supply of a woman's eggs and estrogen production decreases over time. This process typically begins during their late 40's. A woman may continue to menstruate during perimenopause even though these changes are happening and it can last for up to 10 years. Menopause is triggered by the aging process, cancer treatment, and smoking, and can also begin after a hysterectomy.
During menopause, most women experience:
- Vaginal dryness
- Hot flashes
- Thinning hair
- Urinary incontinence
Estrogen comes in several forms with pills being the most common. The patch is worn directly on the skin and is replaced every few days. There are low dose patches available used only to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Topical gels, sprays, or creams are absorbed through the skin and into the bloodstream similar to the patch. Vaginal estrogen comes in either tablet, lotions, or vaginal rings. This form of treatment is used to treat itchiness, vaginal dryness, and pain and burning with intercourse. Typically, vaginal rings are replaced every three months, and tablets and creams can be used daily.
Combination therapy uses progestin, estrogen, and progesterone to lower their risk for cancer of the lining of the uterus. Progesterone not only is a form of birth control, but it also treats menopausal symptoms. Most physicians treat their menopausal patients with natural progesterone instead of synthetics. There are no negative side effects on lipids making it an ideal choice for women with high cholesterol. Hormone replacement therapy is not recommended for those with the following health conditions:
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
- Blood clots
- Heart attack
HRT Side Effects
Possible side effects of hormone replacement therapy include:
- Vaginal bleeding
- Breast tenderness or swelling
- Mood changes
The only way to know if hormone replacement therapy is right for you is to consult with your physician. Your doctor will review your medical history to determine the best options for you. If you are a good candidate for HRT, our compounding pharmacy can consult with your physician to create a custom preparation that is perfect for treating your exact symptoms.
Men and Women may experience hormonal decline associated with aging. The imbalance level of hormones may fluctuate or diminish, causing uncomfortable symptoms.
Symptoms for Females May Include:
- Change in menstrual cycle
- Hot flashes and/or night sweats
- Trouble sleeping
- Vaginal dryness
- Loss of libido
- Mood swings
- Weight gain
Symptoms for Males May Include:
- Low energy
- Decreased muscle mass
- Low libido
- Increased body fat of the upper and mid-section
- Mood changes
- Trouble sleeping
Our pharmacy can compound hormone preparations to help replace the declined hormones and relieve those symptoms. Since no two people are alike, CareFirst Specialty Pharmacy can compound custom preparation for a specific patient’s symptoms. Our preparations are compounded with plant base natural hormones to the right dosage strength and combination.
Our pharmacy understands the importance of working with prescribers and this relationship is the foundation of our service. Our well-trained team will work with you and your prescriber to provide personalized and professional service. We look forward to the opportunity to work with you and your prescriber.
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